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Ministers approve bill to keep ‘anti-IDF’ groups from speaking in schools

The Ministerial Committee for Legislation passes a bill that would prevent organizations that “harm the IDF abroad” from speaking at schools, Education Minister Nafatali Bennett says.

The committee unanimously approves the measure, which would affect Breaking the Silence and other left-wing groups, he says, in a tweet.

Bennett first unveiled his plans for the bill two weeks ago.

In December 2015, Bennett instructed the ministry’s director-general to update an official memorandum regulating educational procedures — a document published every year outlining the ministry’s emphases for the coming school year — to explicitly state that organizations it says incite against the IDF, such as Breaking the Silence, are not allowed entry to schools.

Students protest during a talk by the Breaking The Silence NGO at the Hebrew University, December 22, 2015. (Hadas Parush/Flash90)
Students protest during a talk by the Breaking The Silence NGO at the Hebrew University, December 22, 2015. (Hadas Parush/Flash90)

But the memorandum was not legally binding and in the past month three high school principals have allowed Breaking the Silence members to speak at their students, The Times of Israel learned. The principals were given a dressing down by the Education Ministry, but did not face any disciplinary action.

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